×
You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

Daytime Emmys: New Categories Honor Digital, Musical Achievements

The Daytime Emmys are growing again this year, but only by a couple of categories.

“I think we have 87 this year, which is a lot of categories,” says David Michaels, senior VP of the Daytime Emmy Awards. “I can’t remember the last time we deleted one, but we increased by two this year, including the addition of a second lifetime achievement category.”

That new lifetime achievement award is in the creative arts field. “It’s to honor a behind-the-scenes person who’s had a lifetime of contributing to a show or several shows, not just a front-of-the-camera person.”

Both lifetime honorees will be named in March, but the new award Michaels is most excited about is the outstanding musical performance in a talk show/morning program. “If you think about the kinds of guests that are on ‘The Today Show,’ ‘Good Morning America’ and all of the talk shows, the entries in that category are like a who’s who of the recording industry, so no matter who gets nominated, that category’s going to be on fire,” he says. There will be a minimum of five nominees, but the number could go up.

The Daytime Emmys have made additional changes to accommodate digitally streamed programs. “The world of Web soaps is ever increasing and exploding,” Michaels says. “Last year we noticed the talent category was completely out of control. It was just performer in a digital drama, so we split it into actor in a digital drama and actress in a digital drama so it would be a little more manageable for the judges. And it’s still huge.”

Next year, he says they might opt to do a pre-nomination round to narrow the field to 10 digital performers per category, as they do with the traditional acting categories. “There are a lot of familiar faces on those shows, they’re beautiful shows, and the production values are unbelievably wonderful,” he adds.

The reason digital dramas weren’t included with traditional soaps to begin with is that ― serial storylines aside ― they place different demands on cast and crew. “We wanted to keep it a fair competition,” Michaels says, “and I’d say on average the digital dramas do maybe six to 12 episodes a year, where the network soaps do 256. Nobody felt it was fair to compare them.”

Digital programs are shaking things up among talk shows and kiddie fare, too. “We’re about to launch the blue ribbon panel voting, and there’s an inordinate, extraordinary number of entries from Hulu, Amazon, Netflix, especially in the children’s area,” he says. “I predict you’re going to see a lot of nominations from those outlets.”

Decisions to add, delete or even tweak categories aren’t taken lightly. “Two years ago we split (talk show) host into two categories (entertainment and informative),” Michaels says. “It used to be all the hosts were lumped together, but we decided that wasn’t fair.”

Suggestions are accepted from people throughout the daytime community, and the best ideas are presented, in great detail, to the national awards committee for consideration and possible approval. “I think when there is resistance from the awards committee, it’s because everyone is aware that we don’t want a proliferation of Emmys; you don’t want to dissipate the importance of them,” he says. “So if we’re adding something new, we need everyone to agree that it’s an absolute necessity.”

Michaels believes the need to shake up categories now and then underscores the importance of daytime programming. “I believe anyone who doesn’t say that daytime is alive and well is mistaken. It’s changing, certainly, but it’s still a very vital part of this industry.”

More TV

  • Amy Poehler Is Ready for a

    Amy Poehler Is Ready for a 'Parks and Rec' Reunion

    Is Amy Poehler just getting our hopes up? We hope not, because the funny lady tells Variety that she’s ready for a “Parks and Recreation” reunion. “I am technically available,” Poehler said on Monday at Smart Girls’ 10th anniversary celebration dinner. “I have like six of Leslie’s blazers in my closet, so anytime.” “Parks and Recreation” [...]

  • Liz Meriwether Lake Bell

    Lake Bell, Liz Meriwether Comedy 'Bless This Mess' Moves From Fox to ABC With Series Order

    “Bless This Mess,” the single-camera comedy co-created by Lake Bell and Elizabeth Meriwether, has been ordered to series at ABC, Variety has learned. The series had previously been in contention at Fox and is a co-production between 20th Century Fox Television and ABC Studios. Bell also stars in the series alongside Dax Shepard. In the series, a [...]

  • 'Get Shorty' Renewed for Season 3

    'Get Shorty' Renewed for Season 3 at Epix

    Epix has renewed “Get Shorty” for Season 3. The loose adaptation of the 1990 Elmore Leonard novel and subsequent film stars Chris O’Dowd, Ray Romano, Lidio Porto, Megan Stevenson, Sean Bridgers, and Carolyn Dodd. In the series, O’Dowd plays a hitman from Nevada who struggles to shed his criminal past after he moves to Hollywood to [...]

  • Goliath Season 2 Amazon

    Amazon Renews 'Goliath' for Season 3

    Amazon has renewed legal drama “Goliath” for a third season. “Goliath” centers on washed-up lawyer Billy McBride, played by Billy Bob Thornton, who has one shot at redemption after a client he successfully defended from a murder charge went on to slaughter a family. Thornton won a Golden Globe for his performance in 2017. “Our [...]

  • Selena Quintanilla

    Selena Quintanilla Scripted Series Gets Greenlight at Netflix

    Netflix has ordered a scripted drama series based on the life of Tejano music star Selena Quintanilla. The series is described as a coming of age story following Selena as her dreams come true and all the heart-wrenching and life-changing choices she and her family have to make as they navigate success, family, and music. “Selena [...]

  • Detroiters Renewed Season 2 Comedy Central

    'Detroiters' Canceled at Comedy Central After Two Seasons

    Comedy Central has canceled its Motor City series “Detroiters” after two seasons. The scripted half-hour from Lorne Michaels’ Broadway Video and Comedy Central Productions bowed in early 2017. Season two premiered in June. The buddy comedy was created by stars Sam Richardson and Tim Robinson along with “Saturday Night Live” veterans Zach Kanin and Joe [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content